Talk:Vodka

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Former good article nominee Vodka was a good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
August 25, 2006 Good article nominee Not listed
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Is Russian vodka a distilled liquor? Distillation vs. mixing industrially rectified spirit with water[edit]

I may be completely misinformed, but as far as I know, modern Russian (and post-Soviet\CIS) vodka has NOTHING to do with what is described in this article (and is lovingly promoted by the marketing of vodka makers). Since 1890s, Russian vodka (again AFAIK) is a product of mixing very high-proof, industrially rectified ethanol spirit with water, filtered several times and with various optional additives. No traditional distillation process whatsoever, which would impart some taste from the raw ingredients; thus any mash can be used. As far as the modern Russian vodkas go, this can be verified just by looking at the table of contents.

Distilled vodkas (plural, because this was a kind of liquor, not single recipe) were different beverages, made by distillation from various mashes with various flavourings, typically 38,5% ABV. These were what was called "vodka"; the semantic change was brought about only in 1936, when the mix of rectified spirit and water (so called "table strong wine") was legally renamed "vodka", and genuine vodkas were renamed "vodka-type beverages". It is said (see Russian wiki article, for example) that the transition was motivated by RETURN of the vodka state monopoly in 1890s (this article implies that there was no vodka monopoly after 1860s and in Soviet Union, which is clearly obvious even for a layman).

Since industrially rectified spirit is extremely cheap, the "new" vodka would be very profitable (either for state monopoly or private producers); thus the myth of modern Russian (and post-Soviet\CIS) vodka being an ancient, "all-natural", "healthy" liquor is promoted by mixing the two meanings of the word. The proliferation of this myth was supported first by Czarist government, then by Soviet government, then by private Russian\CIS vodka makers for the same economic reasons.

It is important to note that, inversely, the making of vodka by distillation was OUTLAWED by the same monopoly, and STILL IS illegal when done by an individual. The stigma against so-called "samogon" (self-distilled) was reinforced with propaganda for more than 100 years. While many Russian families still make their own liquor as a hobby (again, illegally), the stigma causes the cognitive dissonance that makes people perceive distilled liquor at the same time as a natural, better quality and milder on the palate (which it usually REALLY is, if made properly; expensive commercially produced samogons exist); and pertain its image of something coarse, backward, poisonous, rough-neck and rural (like the English "moonshine"). The same linguistic programming ingrained the notion of vodka being extremely clean, clear and hygienic (as the Ruswiki article states, this "brand identity" was established as early as the unpopular return of the monopoly in 1890s). So vodka is traditionally "clear as a tear" in Russian songs, and the popular image of samogon is coarse murky "pervach" (heads) gulped down by village drunkards.

If an expert on alcohol beverages is prepared to back me on some of these claims, that would mean the complete overhaul of this article (or addition of relevant clarifications whenever Russian vodka is discussed) is in order.--21:51, 16 December 2012 (UTC)AyeBraine (talk)

But where do they get the rectified spirit from in the first place? By distilling it! That the neutral spirit is then cut with water to potable levels (typically 40% abv) is the same where ever the vodka is made. There's nothing distinct or illegitimate about the Russian practice. It's the same where ever you go. Now is it true that the modern spirit is different from historical forms which were more like whisky or kornbrand? Yes, but, again, that's true of everywhere. That's what all modern vodkas are: spirits distilled to neutral proofs, diluted down with water to potable levels. I think the article covers it quite well and your reading is in error. oknazevad (talk) 12:40, 27 January 2013 (UTC)
Ultimately, the whole issue of regional means-of-production is about the reliable third-party sources, as always. Ethanol can be made from virtually anything, even from wood (i.e. cellulose). Please add citations to the mix. Poeticbent talk
Rectification and distillation are not the same thing, these are quite different processes. Rectification results in neutral, flavor-free ethanol, and distillation keeps some of the flavors and impurities in. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 213.87.139.27 (talk) 13:17, 13 November 2013 (UTC)
Rectification is just repeated distillation. In order to rectify spirit, one must distill it; there's no distinct chemical process used. See rectified spirit. It is quite possible to intentionally not distill up to neutral levels, as is done in all forms of whisky, but to get to neutral levels, one indeed must distill. oknazevad (talk) 18:36, 13 November 2013 (UTC)

dubious EB ref[edit]

I removed mentioning of "Sydnayaska Krueger" - absent in the ref cited. Could not confirm from independent sources. - Altenmann >t

Edit warring on Vodka[edit]

Please stop assuming ownership of vodka, user Be-with (talk · contribs). Behavior such as this is regarded as disruptive, and is a violation of Wikipedia policy. You seem to be making repeated edits since 22 February 2013‎ beginning with your Static IP address 31.200.181.224 (talk · contribs), that multiple other people disagree with, and not providing any real explanation of the changes. More relevant info available at Wikipedia:Blocking policy. Thanks, Poeticbent talk 22:15, 3 March 2013 (UTC)

It is not a diminutive form of the Slavic word voda (water)[edit]

I am from Russia and believe me vodka is not a diminutive form. May be it has such roots but now it is not, "vodka" doesn't sound as a small or little water to the Russian native speaker. It has no special tinge. It is perfectly explained in the article Diminutive#Russian. 91.77.225.230 (talk) 21:16, 2 July 2013 (UTC)

Please see Talk:Vodka/Archive_1#The_Etymology_of_the_word_Vodka. In short: it's a referenced statement and even if today "vodka" doesn't mean small water it was once the origin of the word. Languages change over hundreds of years. Sjö (talk) 11:05, 1 August 2013 (UTC)

It is in polish. Maybe it's a definitive proof vodka originates in Poland? — Preceding unsigned comment added by 89.72.210.170 (talk) 18:21, 20 September 2013 (UTC)

Chili pepper flavored[edit]

Chili pepper flavored vodka is not new. It's hundreds of years old and part of old Slavic folk remedies. Rklawton (talk) 19:35, 3 September 2013 (UTC)

Production by country[edit]

The history section concentrates on Poland, Russia and Sweden. It would be good to have some history of vodka production elsewhere, including the Baltics and other ex-Soviet states, and in the U.S. (mainly after WWII). Also suggest a chart of current production by country. Sca (talk) 17:20, 13 June 2014 (UTC)